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Today’s introduction comes from Jennifer Medina, a national correspondent based in Los Angeles.
Lawmakers in Sacramento have been reeling for weeks over accusations that the Capitol tolerates a culture of sexual harassment.
Amid the steady stream of accusations came a report in The Sacramento Bee last week that State Senator Tony Mendoza, a Democrat from Los Angeles, invited a 23-year-old woman working in his office to a home he shares with several legislators. One of those roommates was Kevin de León, the Democratic leader of the State Senate since 2014 who recently announced his challenge against United States Senator Dianne Feinstein.
Over the weekend, Senator de León moved out of the house and announced that an outside legal firm will now handle investigations of sexual harassment, rather than an internal committee he oversees.
“He was shocked and troubled by the new allegations over the weekend,” Jonathan Underland, a spokesman for the senator, said in a statement.
For years, the Senate Rules Committee has handled accusations of sexual harassment. Senator de León is the chairman of the committee, but his aides say he was unaware of the accusations until his office was contacted by a reporter last week.Continue reading the main story
Daniel Alvarez, the Secretary of the Senate, said in a statement that the process is “to conduct a thorough but internal investigation into complaints before reporting them to Rules Committee,” and that because the investigation had not been complete, the senator had not been notified.
Now the outside firm will investigate “any and all allegations,” effectively taking the oversight away from the Rules Committee. The firm will also make the “general findings” public, although it may redact names and details at the discretion of the victims and reporters, Senate officials said.
(Please note: We regularly highlight articles on news sites that have limited access for nonsubscribers.)
• The United States Supreme Court will decide whether a California law that requires “crisis pregnancy centers” to provide information about abortion violates free speech. [The New York Times]
• Southern California is having its largest apartment boom in more than two decades, but the added supply has not caused rents to decrease. [The Los Angeles Daily News]
• Tensions rose between employees and management at The Los Angeles Times after Disney temporarily boycotted the newspaper for its coverage of Disney’s business ties. [The New York Times]
• Reported hate crimes increased 11.2 percent in California in 2016, according to the F.B.I. Most victims were targeted based on their race, religion or sexual orientation. [The San Francisco Chronicle]
• West Nile virus, which spreads to humans from mosquitoes, has killed 25 people in California this year, mostly in Los Angeles County. The virus caused 19 state deaths last year. [The Los Angeles Daily News]
• With plans to expand into Toronto by the holidays, Lyft is set to become an international company. It has also had discussions with London transportation officials. [The New York Times]
• Qualcomm rejected Broadcom’s $103 billion takeover offer in what would have been the largest tech deal ever, but Broadcom may try to earn sway on the board of directors. [The New York Times]
• Herb Lee, the first Chinese-American police officer in San Francisco and an executive director of the city’s Police Activities League, died this month at 84. [The San Francisco Chronicle]
• Chuck Mosley, the original vocalist for the Bay Area rock band Faith No More, died this month at 57. He sang on the band’s breakthrough, “We Care a Lot.” [The East Bay Times]
• Cody Bellinger was unanimously named the National League’s rookie of the year, becoming the 18th Dodger to win the award. He hit 39 home runs while splitting time at first base and the outfield. [The New York Times]
• The Los Angeles Philharmonic’s production of “War of the Worlds” is an opera that sprawls across the city, with outdoor sites conveying the panic of an alien invasion. [Review | The New York Times]
And Finally ...
The Great Los Angeles Walk lets people see the city from a different vantage point. Sometimes that means the mundane, like an unexplored shop, and sometimes the memorable: the Lakers icon Magic Johnson, the aftermath of a crane collapse, and lots and lots of weddings.
The horde of walkers itself, however, may be the most jarring sight in a sprawling city known for its traffic.
“Every year we manage to surprise people,” said Michael Schneider, the walk’s founder and organizer, “because they don’t expect to see an army of Angelenos walking down the street. It shocks some people, but it inspires others.”
About 40 people participated in the first walk, along Wilshire Boulevard in 2006. Melrose Avenue and a bevy of boulevards — Pico, Sunset, West Adams, Hollywood, Ventura and Olympic — have been explored since.
This year’s 17-mile walk will travel along Beverly, one of the city’s oldest boulevards, for the first time. An expected crowd of several hundred people will begin at the Japanese American National Museum in Little Tokyo at 9 a.m. on Saturday, with plans to reach Santa Monica State Beach by sunset. Along the way, walkers will amble past City Hall, Walt Disney Concert Hall and CBS Television City.
You truly don’t need a car to explore Los Angeles, and Mr. Schneider recommends older neighborhoods that are walkable, including Los Feliz, Larchmont, Atwater Village and Highland Park.
The annual walk across the city is one way to encourage people to turn off the ignition, to gaze at street art. There is no finish line.
“Some people treat it almost as a marathon, and that’s not the point of this walk,” Mr. Schneider said. “This is all about taking your time and exploring.”
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California Today is edited by Julie Bloom, who grew up in Los Angeles and graduated from U.C. Berkeley.Continue reading the main story